Everyone knows that exercise is a necessity for good health, but this is especially true for seniors. According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, older adults receive even more benefits from exercise than younger people. From reducing the risk of an injury to preventing chronic disease, exercise is an important way to ensure long-term health and wellness. Never underestimate the importance of exercise for seniors.
The Importance of Exercise for Seniors
Some seniors are reluctant to exercise, often because they believe it will place them at risk for injuries. However, studies show that avoiding exercise is far more risky. As a result of being inactive, seniors are more likely to be hospitalized and prescribed medicine. Inactivity can also cause frequent trips to the doctor for preventable health problems.
By simply exercising, you can prevent conditions like heart disease and dementia and improve your mental function and emotional health. Regular exercise also prevents chronic conditions like obesity, diabetes, and high blood pressure. Plus, in addition to preventing diseases associated with aging, physical fitness helps to speed healing. When people age, injuries and wounds take a longer time to heal, but regular exercise can speed up healing by up to 25 percent.
Better Mental Capacity
It is normal to experience a decline in memory and cognitive ability as you age. However, scientists have found a correlation between physical activity and slower mental decline. When a person exercises, it causes blood to flow to the brain and promote cell growth. As a result, seniors can limit the impact of mental decline through exercise. Regular physical activity can also help one manage stress, and studies show that exercise helps to reduce the severity of depression. In addition, it can boost your mood for better emotional health.
When it comes to preventing falls, the importance of exercise for seniors cannot be underestimated. Seniors are more likely to fall and become injured; in particular, broken hips are a common problem for this age group. With regular exercise, however, seniors enjoy better balance and fewer falls. Strength training can also increase bone strength, so that broken bones and fractures are less likely.
Enjoy Better Sleep
Seniors are more likely to have insomnia and sleep disorders than any other age group. Once sleep quality declines, it can impact one’s physical, emotional, and mental health. By getting regular exercise, seniors can improve the quality and duration of their sleep each night. They can fall asleep faster and awake feeling refreshed.
Increased Life Expectancy
Exercise can also boost life expectancy. Even a moderate amount of physical fitness can increase someone’s life by years. While it is better to have a lifetime of physical activity, it is never too late to enjoy the benefits of fitness. Whether you’re 60 years old or 100 years old, an exercise program can improve your health and lengthen your life.
To stay on top of your fitness regimen, try signing up for activities at your local senior center or attending group exercise classes. In addition, don’t underestimate simple, low-key exercises. Even walking the dog or gardening can provide health benefits. Finally, focus on consistency and don’t be afraid to split up your workouts. For example, walking ten minutes a day about six days a week will provide lasting benefits. While finding exercise opportunities is not always easy, it is crucial for your long-term health and happiness.
Looking for an assisted living community in Tennessee? Check out Hearthside Senior Living in Collierville. Our warm and inviting community makes it easy for seniors to embrace a healthy lifestyle, with home-cooked and restaurant-style meals, exercise classes, and a nurse devoted to residents’ health and wellness. To learn more about our amenities and services, please give us a call at 901-854-6590 or contact us online.